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What’s with the rise of “fact-based journalism”?
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Aug. 22, 2012, 1:19 p.m.

Sports teams and sports media already share a thick network of connections and conflicts: media pay for the right to broadcast games; teams limit the access of media to players and coaches; teams create media to compete with the people who cover them.

Here’s a new one: ESPN is partnering with TruMedia Networks to offer a football statistics-and-analytics product called Crossing Pattern. The target audience: the football teams ESPN covers.

The first customer is the Jacksonville Jaguars, who’ll need some really solid analytics (and some improved play from Blaine Gabbert) to improve on their 5-11 season a year ago.

Crossing Pattern allows teams to break down statistics and define key trends for their own squads and for opponents. This unique platform will give teams access to the same tools ESPN’s analysts and researchers use to analyze performance on the networks, Web sites, Mobile apps and ESPN The Magazine.

It’s news-organization-as-consultant.

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